B-Klasse F-Cell Ends Historic Trip Around the World
Three cars set out on a 30,000 km journey (18640 miles) at the beginning of the year, prepared to take on the challenges they might have faced in 14 countries on four continents. One of them was involved in a crash in Kazakhstan in the middle of May, and had to call it quits. The other two finished the tour on Wednesday, proving to the world that an EV based on hydrogen is as viable as all other types of electric cars.
For Mercedes, the tour was not as much of a test run of the cars as it was a test run of the infrastructure. Relying for the future line of electric vehicles in its lineup more on fuel cells rather than on lithium ion batteries, Daimler found out, the hard way, that there's little-to-none hydrogen fueling infrastructure in place on which to rely on.
And since the entire world is rushing to install EV chargers, it will probably come down to Daimler getting into its overalls and doing exactly what the Renault-Nissan alliance began doing years ago: jump start the infrastructure on its own.
“With the F-CELL World Drive we have shown, that the time for electric vehicles with fuel cell has come. Now the development of the infrastructure has to pick up speed,” said Dieter Zetsche, head of Mercedes-Benz Cars.
“For only an adequate number of hydrogen fueling stations enables car drivers to benefit from the advantages of this technology: high range, short refueling times, zero emissions."